April 4, 2018 - SouthWestern Integrated Fibre Technology Inc. (SWIFT) welcomes the
Government of Ontario's commitment to investing an additional $500 million, over
three years, to expand broadband connectivity in rural and northern communities.
This commitment included up to $71 million towards improving cellular coverage in
eastern Ontario, and up to $20 million to support a Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellite
constellation project, which will help enable access to secure broadband services
in rural and remote Ontario.
"We are pleased to see that the provincial budget has recognized broadband as an
essential means by which citizens and businesses access information, offer services
and create opportunities," said Gerry Marshall, Board Chair at SWIFT. "We look forward
to receiving additional details regarding this investment so that we can better
understand how the government plans to address the growing Internet infrastructure
needs of Ontario's rural and remote communities."
"We commend the provincial government's continued commitment to invest in broadband
infrastructure and, improve connectivity in rural and urban communities," said Geoff
Hogan, Chief Executive Officer at SWIFT. "We look forward to seeing the details
in the upcoming provincial broadband strategy that will hopefully have a plan to
give all Ontario's residents equitable access to the internet."
SWIFT will continue to work with all levels of government and other stakeholder
groups to maximize broadband infrastructure investments until we have built a fully
integrated, fibre optic network that connects Southwestern Ontario, Caledon, and
the Niagara Region to endless opportunities.
About the SWIFT Initiative SouthWestern Integrated Fibre Technology Inc. (SWIFT)
is a not-for-profit, collective broadband initiative that is funding the construction
of an affordable, open-access, ultra-high-speed fibre-optic regional broadband network
for everyone in Southwestern Ontario, Caledon and the Niagara Region. To overcome
our region's broadband infrastructure gaps, SWIFT has developed a long-term plan
to help more than 3.5 million Ontarians, or 25% of Ontario's population, to connect
and keep pace in a changing digital world. The project is leveraging $180 million
in combined investments by the federal and provincial governments and over $17 million
in investments by municipalities across the region. SWIFT membership is open to
any community or organization in southwestern Ontario that needs connectivity to
any of its locations. Members benefit from SWIFT's significant procurement expertise,
including aggregated demand, negotiated rates, and support in preparing RFPs for
broadband services. As a buying group, SWIFT also ensures greater competition between
telecom service providers which will lead to better services at lower prices in
Help SWIFT build "broadband for everyone" by completing an Internet usage survey: